There are many cases where you cannot avoid a drunk driver. Everything just happens quickly on the road, and mistakes made by a drunk driver can cause an accident that you can never anticipate.

That said, defensive driving can help, and knowing how to identify a drunk driver before a crash may allow you to take proper action to give them more distance and avoid a collision. You may even be able to call the police to get them off the road before someone gets hurt. A few signs you should be wary of include:

  • Swerving all over the road, either within the lane or crossing into the oncoming lanes or onto the shoulder.
  • Driving unpredictably and making erratic decisions, such as sudden turns without a blinker.
  • Slowing down very quickly, as if they did not notice the reason to slow down — a red light, a pedestrian crossing the road, etc. — until the last second.
  • Delaying driving after a red light turns green and/or accelerating very quickly, almost as if they are on the verge of losing control.
  • Always crashing into other cars around you, fixed objects on the side of the road or anything else.
  • Turning far more widely than is necessary, which may carry them off the road or into oncoming traffic.
  • Responding slowly to things around them. We know alcohol can slow down response times, and that takes many forms. It definitely impacts driving ability.

Again, though, even understanding what to look for doesn’t mean you’ll always avoid an accident. If you get injured, you must know what legal options you have.